Lead (Pb) Mining in Ebonyi State, Nigeria: Implications for Environmental And Human Health Risk.

Abstract

Recent cases of lead (Pb) poisoning in Nigeria which has claimed the lives of over 500 children has been traced to mining. Forty soil samples were collected from the vicinity of four mining sites (A – D) scattered across the three senatorial zones of the state.  These samples were sieved to <125 µm particle size fractions and digested using hotplate. Lead levels in these samples were determined using Flame atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (FAAS). The results revealed that the mean concentration of Site A was 7177 mg/kg, Site B = 5051 mg/kg, Site C = 3198 mg/kg and Site D = 7881 mg/kg. These values were compared with soil guideline values (SGVs) from six countries and they were all in excess of the SGVs. It is to be noted that when Pb levels exceed SGVs, it signifies a level of risk to man and his environment.

Keywords: Mining, Soil, children, health risk, lead (Pb)


Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 13-21 (Download PDF)

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